Stern light blocked by wind vane - SailNet Community

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Old 06-12-2007
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Question Stern light blocked by wind vane

I have put an Aries wind vane on the boat. The penny dropped the other night that it will partially block the stern light on the transom. (The tricolor on the masthead isn't working, and it's probably not going to get fixed soon enough.)

Any solutions to getting the stern light beyond the wind vane? So far I have;

* move it sideways (but I'm not sure I can go far enough sideways for the 135 degrees to clear the vane!)
* mount it on the vane (but the outboard frame of the vane is fairly low down - not a great location for the stern light)

Thanks.
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Old 06-12-2007
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It's always best to align the stern light with the boat's centerline. If your boat has a SS top rail above the transom, use a rail-mount fitting there for a separate stern light fixture.

Otherwise, perhaps you could either install a light staff on the toerail to extend as high as necessary to clear the windvane, or mount a new fixture on the backstay wire.
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What TB said makes a lot of sense. A rail mount fitting, high enough to clear the wind vane would be a good, simple solution. A light staff is a bit more complicated, but also relatively easy to do. I'm not too crazy about the idea of mounting a navigation light on the backstay.
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I agree SD - the backstay mount should be a last resort. Using the railing is probably best - depending upon wysiwyg's boat design.

My transom is VERY high and utilizes a stanchion mounted stern light.

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I'd run some tests first before I worried too much about it. The boat's normal motion at sea may be enough.

I have an Aires vane, too, on my stern. The sternlight is mounted on the pushpit, on the first rail above deck, offset a bit from the center. Raising it higher wouldn't really accomplish anything, since the vane itself, when mounted, is much higher than the pulpit. See pic here: Gallery :: Miscellaneous 2007 :: SBF_0126

My main problem over the past 18 years or so with this arrangement has not been obstruction of the sternlight, but reflection of the sternlight off the Aires, back into the cockpit. I finally applied some black electrical tape in the right spots and it helps.

Bill
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